August 2016 New Gear

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Sony UHP-H1 Hi-Res-Certified Blu-ray Player

Video is usually the first thing that comes to mind when you think Blu-ray, but Sony has gone out of its way to build a player that puts audio and video performance on equal footing—and maybe even gives audio an edge. The Hi-Res Audio–certified UHP-H1 is built to withstand vibration and equipped to play just about any file or disc you throw at it—including SACDs and DSD or 192-kilohertz/24-bit music files. It also has built-in Wi-Fi and supports Bluetooth streaming via Sony’s LDAC codec for “higher-than-typical” bit rates. And it’s no slouch in the video department, either, offering 4K upscaling at up to 60 hertz (though no compatibility with the new UHD Blu-ray Discs).

Get Connected: When you’re not connected wirelessly, you can choose between optical and analog inputs or play Hi-Res files via the front-panel USB port. Price: $350

Sony • (239) 245-6352 •


Onkyo TX-RZ810 A/V Receiver

One of three models recently added to Onkyo’s RZ Series, the TX-RZ810 is ready to decode Dolby Atmos soundtracks out of the box and can be upgraded to decode DTS:X via a firmware update, which also brings Google Cast and Tidal music streaming into the fold. Highlights include an overbuilt amplifier rated to deliver 7 x 130 watts (into 8 ohms), eight HDMI inputs with support for high dynamic range (HDR) video, two HDMI outputs, and multiroom capability via powered Zone 2 outputs and Zone 3 preouts.

Movie Master: THX Select2 Plus certification ensures theater sound that is loud (and clear) in rooms up to 2,000 cubic feet. Add to that Onkyo’s AccuReflex technology—which time-aligns sound from upfiring height speakers to create a more cohesive surround experience—and you’re ready for movie magic. Price: $1,299

Onkyo • (800) 229-1687 •


Upcycle Studio Mojo Series Stereo Cases

Yes, the Ransom Mojo (shown) is a speaker, and yes, it’s housed in a vintage aluminum suitcase, complete with scratches, dings, and a wood handle. It’s one of many unique Mojo Stereo Cases offered by Sydney, Australia–based Upcycle Studio, which prides itself on “transforming trash into something amazing.” The eco-minded company offers a variety of handcrafted products ranging from backpacks and quirky hats to unique jewelry and much more.

Vintage Boom Box: A dozen or so suitcase speakers are displayed on Upcycle’s website, each with onboard amplification, a 25-hour rechargeable battery, and from one to six speakers. Ransom ($433) is ported and packs two woofers, a midrange driver, and a tweeter—all “reclaimed house speakers.” Prices range from $288 to $469 plus shipping.

Upcycle • •


Sonus Faber Principia Speaker Collection

If you thought the fine Italian craftsmanship of Sonus Faber speakers was beyond reach, think again. The Principia Collection is designed to provide a “definite Italian touch at an affordable price without giving up on perfect music reproduction.” The line includes two three-way towers, a couple of two-way bookshelf models, and a center-channel speaker. All are finished in black vinyl veneer and borrow the 1-inch fabric-dome tweeter, brushed aluminum accents, and trapezoidal cabinets from the company’s upscale Chameleon line.

The Price Is Right: No worries about sticker shock here. Prices start at $349 for the Principia C center speaker and scale up to $549/pair and $699/pair for the Principia 1 and Principia 3 bookshelf models and $1,199/pair and $1,499/pair for the Principia 5 and Principia 7 towers.

Sonus Faber • (510) 843-7120 •


Aumeo Audio Headphone Interface

Wouldn’t it be cool if you could tailor the sound from your phone or music player to the unique characteristics of your hearing? Aumeo is a matchbook-sized headphone interface/processor that does just that. Plug your ’phones into its minijack and connect to your playback device via Bluetooth 3.0 (or a minijack cable), and you’re ready to roll—after you undergo a hearing test, that is.

Testing, Testing: Don’t worry, you don’t have to make a trip to your otolaryngologist. Aumeo has an app that creates a unique audio profile by measuring your ears’ sensitivity to eight frequencies (it even compensates for differences between your ears). When the profile is applied during playback, Aumeo swears you’ll hear nuances you’ve been missing for a richer, less fatiguing listening experience. Price: $199

Aumeo Audio •




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